This is the Year of the Healthcare Hack


Cyber attacks are increasingly targeting U.S. insurers and hospitals for personal information. In the past, cyber attacks have primarily been concentrated on banks and retailers to steal financial data. However, cyber security experts are warning healthcare companies that 2015 is the "Year of the Healthcare Hack." Hackers are looking to the less-secure healthcare industry especially because the amount of digital healthcare data is rapidly growing. The number 2 U.S. health insurer, Anthem, caused great alarm when it disclosed an enormous breach, affecting almost 80 million people. The FBI and experts from FireEye Inc. are currently investigating the Anthem breach.

Stolen healthcare information can be used to obtain medical services and prescriptions, but also allow for identity theft and financial crimes. Insurers and other companies alike have been preparing for breaches after the recent attacks. Cigna Corp. has hired hackers to break into its systems and test their security. St. Jude Medical Inc. claims that the company has increased investment in cyber security significantly over the last few years. Since 2011, both insurers, UnitedHealth Group and Aetna, have warned investors about the risk of cyber crime in their annual reports.

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